Right now, the Hurricanes have two young players new to the roster in 2021-22 who have the potential to add higher-end scoring depth to the top half of the lineup.
Jesperi Kotkaniemi was acquired with the hope and to some degree expectation that he could be exactly that when the Hurricanes gave up first and third round draft picks and also ponied up a $6.1 million salary that spent most of what was left in the salary cap budget.
Seth Jarvis, on the other hand, was projected to be back in juniors by now, but a good training camp/preseason and an auspicious start to his NHL career has him still at least potentially in the mix for a longer-term stay in Raleigh.
On the surface, these two situations might appear to be separate, but I actually think they are very much intertwined.
If you consider Jordan Staal and Jesper Fast to be a pair for a third checking/match up line (that is also scoring at a decent clip) and also like what Niederreiter brought to that line as another big body who could play a heavy, cycling game in the offensive zone, then that really only leaves five players to build out the top two scoring lines — Aho, Svechnikov, Teravainen, Trocheck and Necas. Especially if the Hurricanes want to improve from last season, the team really needs one more player who can score at a top six forward pace and not just be a low-scoring complementary player. At a basic level, I think the point of parting ways with solid depth players McGinn and Foegele was to try to upgrade scoring-wise in this slot.
Kotkaniemi was added to do exactly that, but has started slow with only three points in 13 games for a meager 19-point pace over 82 games despite a pretty decent helping of scoring-favorable line mates and also some power play ice time. By no means is it time to make a final evaluation of his acquisition, but at the same time, keeping open other options who might be able to help upgrade the top six seems reasonable. Enter Seth Jarvis. Jarvis’ two points in six games is probably a bit understated. He had at least a couple assists left on the table when playing on the fourth line and not having some grade A setups finished, and he also has two goals that were wiped away by reviews. Maybe more significantly, the volume of decent of better scoring chances that he has been a part of in six games is a much higher pace than Kotkaniemi.
In an ideal world, the Hurricanes would send Jarvis back to juniors and slide the first year of his entry-level contract forward another year because the NHL lineup was too deep to have room for him anyway. But with the Hurricanes very much trying to win now, if Jarvis has even a reasonable potential to be part of that the team might be willing to spend some future for today. After all, they did give up two draft picks and a sizable contract to Kotkaniemi for exactly the same reason.
In this regard, I think the other big question is if/how much one would expect Jarvis to improve the team for the playoffs which is all that really matters in the end. In that regard, I think the interesting question is if you would rather spend a top six slot on Jarvis or if instead maybe the team would consider spending more futures at the trade deadline to add a middle of the lineup or better veteran to the mix for the playoffs.
I am torn. Jarvis has impressed me thus far. As a young player who has already shown capable of think the game at NHL speed despite minimal experience doing so, he should continue to improve at a rapid pace as he learns. That situation offers significant potential for upside. On the other hand, the combination of adding more of a power forward type forward rental at the trade deadline and in the process saving a year of Jarvis’ entry-level contract could win for this year while also helping future years too.
What say you Canes fans?
1) Do you think that Kotkaniemi’s modest start as a Hurricane could impact the decision on whether to keep Jarvis at the NHL level and burn the year of his entry-level contract?
2) Do you see Jarvis being a difference-maker or just a capable complementary player come 2022 NHL Playoff time?
3) With three more games before a decision needs to be made, what would you do with Seth Jarvis for 2021-22?
1. Jesperi Kotkaniemi has disappointed pretty significantly. He has no goals, no points and 2 shots on goal in the last 6 games, frequently gets beaten along the boards and has been one of the Canes worst forwards. Granted it’s only been 12 games, but he needs to shape up, else TD’s gamble on him will start to look pretty short sighted.
Jarvis, on the other hand, is playing his heart out and proving that he belongs. I think any team that rewards hard work will sign him up for the season and I think Roddie will advocate for it. The Canes can “compromise elsewhere”.
2. I think Jarvis will be capable come playoffs but not necessarily a difference maker (it’s one year too soon).
3. Keep him, he’s earnt it.
Well, Necas and Neiderriter are back tonight and back in their traditional spots of Necas with Trocheck and Neiderriter with Staal. Jarvis stays on the first line. Kotkaniemi as one of four guys rotating in and out of the fourth line.
Jarvis is going nowhere unless his play sours.
Kotkaniemi is basically on a $6M PTO. Early returns are not good. He looks just like he did in Montreal. An interview with Waddell suggested the move to wing could be a reason. I find that funny. If you are smart enough to play center you sure has hell can play wing. He is who he looked like he was. Hope he turns it around, but he’s about to watch some games from the pressbox.
The business reason is to win the cup. This isn’t the Karmanos regime where saving money is paramount. This is a team that signed an injured Gardiner to 4 years at $4M. This is a team that gave up a first and a third round pick to our Kotkaniemi on a $6M PTO.
As most here either insinuate or outright say Jarvis isn’t a difference maker he keeps making a difference. How many scoring chances does he have to create? Last night he is playing against top defenders and his little ass still drags defenders to the net. He buries shots when he gets them whether they hold up or not. Kid is special. He is going nowhere.
McGinn is gone because of McGinn. He could have stayed.
Agree <. I see no reason to not keep Jarvis here. Burn that year, he is making a difference and will only get better as the season progresses. The brain trust knows more but my opinion is keep him. He makes smart decisions, not just offense, good defense too..
KK is young and being given a chance. Right now, he should not be on the ice with his performance. And has been with top players, which means no excuses. If it is a bust, so be it. It was worth the shot. Late 1st and 3rd round picks do not always work out. There is still time but he is working his way to the bench. Given KKs results I do not see him affecting any Jarvis decision. He is not in the same league at this time.
Yes, I do see Jarvis being a difference maker come playoff time. I have often complained about teams like the lightning giving there young guys a chance and hitting gold. It’s our turn. We are finally letting a young gun grow. Keep him with the big club.
Even thoght the Canes are, per Waddell, in a “win now” mode, from a business perspective there is absolutely no reason to keep Jarvis up. The value of his ELC slipping another year is immeasurable. As hard as he plays and as good as he is, he is not that type of gamechanger/ There are other ways to put the team in a position to chjallenge for the SC when crunch time comes.
BTW, I think McGInn’s departure was largely contract/cap-driven and not explicitly an attempt to upgrade. As a UFA he would be looking for a riase from the team. And there were enough stories early in the summer that both Foegele and the Canes were looking for a reason to split – Foegele wasn’t satisfied here with the role he was playing.
McGinn got I think 4 X 2.75 mill in Pitt, less than half of what KK is making this year in Carolina.
I would’ve loved to keep him at that price, maybe move him down to the 4th line consistently with Martinook and Stepphan.
For McGinn it was dollar and term. I doubt the Canes would have signed him for more than a 1-year (2 tops) deal to maintain cap flexibiity, and I expect he was already at the max the team wanted to pay a player in his role. And I also think the team decided that it had run it’s course with McGinn as it looked to retool the roster this season. McGinn had a good run with the Canes.
It’s going to be pretty hard to send Jarvis back down after the stint he has had. I didn’t watch the last two games but he chipped in goals in both. On the other hand, Jesperi Kotkaniemi has been demoted to the 4th line and I think he’s on his way to the press box. If the Cans truly believe in earning your spot, and our coach most certainly does, Jarvis is a fixture on this team for the season. And, yes, by now I have to say he’s a difference maker.
It looks like Jarvis is on tonight’s roster, meaning he will stay for the season (this is his 10th game).
After the start he’s had I think the Canes couldn’t send him to the minors.
Of course he will hit a rookie wall, and arguments can and will be made that he is not fully ready (yours truly will probably be one of them at some point), but based on the games he’s played, he has simply earned this.
Good to see KK score and generally play a decent game against the Kings on Saturday.
I am guessing the Canes are hoping he could replace Trocheck as a scoring line center after this season is up, though it’s hard to say.
Hopefully he will round into form, or at least give us some reason for optimism.
I wrote, “…from a business perspective there is absolutely no reason to keep Jarvis up. The value of his ELC slipping another year is immeasurable. As hard as he plays and as good as he is, he is not that type of gamechanger…”.
I am walking that statement back. Although I believe it was true when I wrote it, Jarvis has now made himself “that type of a gamechanger”. I don’t mind it when a player proves me wrong!
It’s a great feeling when players prove your negative predictions wrong, about as good as it gets.
Jarvis has cooled off some, to be expected, but JK has really stepped up in the last 2 or 3 games. Hopefully this ends up being a win win for the Canes. I could see Trocheck being traded (he’s in the last year of his contract) and JK taking his place as a second scoring line center (in a best case scenario).
Aho and Svech do not have the level of a consistent NHL superstar, they fade too often and too noticeably, but the strength of this squad lies in the players who can step up when it happens, like Necas, Jarvis and JK.
A first quarter record of 15, 4 and 1 is definitely not to be sneezed at, and it has come without contributions from key players like Staal (I think scoreless in his last 11 games) or Slaven (no goals).
I think the Canes are about to give some of those points back, especially given the Covid issues that have taken out half of our defense, but if we can tread water at .500 for the next 2 or 3 weeks, winning the winnable games (e.g. against the Sens) things should still be ok in the Hurricane belt come 2022.
The keys to doing so are taking fewer penalties and finding a cure for the lackluster powerplay. Special teams see good teams through tough times.
I hope Matt is ok. I understand that life, especially life in these “unprecedented times” is hard, and maintaining a website is not a first priority, but I sure miss the discussions on here.
Most importantly, I hope y’all are doing well!
As far as hockey is concerned, it’s been mostly fun.
The Canes have started hitting some turbulence, which is to be expected during an 82-game season.
What is unusual is to have a 13-game cushion before you hit the slide, so even after a series of pretty unfavorable recent games the team is still 10 games above 500.
Losing half your D to injuries/Covid is also tricky to handle for any team.
There is an important road trip on the horizon, the next (and last?) west coast outing.
I hope the Canes can escape it with a 2, 2, 1 record, ideally 3,2,0. If they can manage that they should be in pretty good shape going into 2022.
This team has all the makings of cruising into the playoffs, but we can’t take anything for granted in the Metro division.
The Caps are playing lights out, so are the Rangers.
The Penguins are better than their record indicates (especially if they get Malkin back).
The rest of the division consists of teams that could go on a roll at any moment, they got the players.
The one thing that still worries me is that the Canes haven’t really played many divisional (4-point) games yet. They bea the Islanders and Columbus early, are 1, 1 against the Flyers and lost the one outing against the Caps, albeit with the Caps getting a lucky bounce coming from a very questionable call (the second penalty call putting them up 5 on 3), so that game could’ve gone either way.
The Canes have historically fared poorly against Metropolitan opponents and that is something they have to solve if they are to guarantee themselves a ticket to the playoffs.
I expect the teams at the bottom to be entering desperation mode, so I am pretty sure we’ll see at lesat one of them go on a W streak.
If the Canes can find a way to hold their own against the division, they are already in a good place for a third consecutive post season appearance.